IAR Blu-ray Preview: 'Jack the Giant Slayer'

Tuesday, 18 June 2013 09:19 Written by  iamrogue
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IAR Blu-ray Preview: 'Jack the Giant Slayer'

Today, you can partake in a swashbuckling adventure, and you don't even have to climb a beanstalk.

As of Tuesday, June 18th, Jack the Giant Slayer is available on Blu-ray, brings an imaginative fantasy realm straight into your living room, complete with lumbering giants, huge action setpieces, and endless derring-do, all presented in stunning high definition picture and sound.

This is one instance where DVD or digital download simply won't suffice.  After all, "giant" is right there in the title.  When we're talking about truly gigantic spectacle, Blu-ray is the only way to go.

Inspired by the centuries-old British fairy tale, Jack the Giant Slayer expands the scope of the story to truly epic proportions.  Our hero is Jack, a humble farmhand in a fictitious medieval setting.  On a rare visit to town, Jack stumbles into a meeting with the beautiful Princess Isabelle and gains possession of some mysterious beans.  When he inadvertently loses track of just one bean, it sprouts into a massive beanstalk that carries Isabelle skyward to Gantua, the mythic home of 25-foot tall giants.  Jack volunteers to accompany the king's royal guard up the beanstalk, but their presence in Gantua threatens a longstanding but tenuous peace between humans and giants.  Soon, the giants are descending from their aerial home with war on their minds.

Bryan Singer, the Usual Suspects director who proved his blockbuster chops with films like X-Men, X2, and Superman Returns, brings his grounded style to rollicking fantasy.  Nicholas Hoult (Warm Bodies) stars as the titular giant slayer, while Eleanor Tomlinson (Alice in Wonderland) brings beauty and strength to the role of Princess Isabelle.  Ewan McGregor (The Impossible)lends support as the gallant knight Elmont, a loyal servant of King Brahmwell, played by Ian McShane (Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides).  Staney Tucci (The Hunger Games), meanwhile, brings an energetic deviousness to Roderick, an adviser to the king with one eye on the throne.

Unlike many event films converted into three dimensions during post-production, Jack the Giant Slayer was actually filmed in 3D. 

As such, the movie is available in 2D and 3D Blu-ray editions that present all the action in beautiful 1080p.  Both the two-disc 2D presentation and three-disc 3D version are combopacks which also include a DVD copy.  Additionally, both include UltraViolet, which allows consumers to download and instantly stream the standard definition theatrical version of the film to a wide range of devices including computers, compatible tablets, smartphones, game consoles, Internet-connected TVs and Blu-ray players.

Whether you go with the 2D or 3D Jack the Giant Slayer, you'll find no shortage of special features. 

Rather than simply laying its bonus content out there in traditional menus, this Blu-ray innovates with "Become a Giant Slayer," an interactive game that challenges fans to climb a beanstalk – avoiding wind and other hazards – in order to access a bevy of behind the scenes featurettes.  Hosted by Hoult, these cover many aspects of the film's production.  "Know Your Enemy" covers the design and motion-capture process behind the giants, while "The Magic of the Beanstalk" examines the on-set construction of the stalk, and "How to Zip' shows how Hoult and McGregor zipped from one beanstalk set to another.  "Defending Your Kingdom" delves into a massive castle set.  Costume design is chronicled in "Suiting Up," and "Attack Tactics" breaks down the creation of the climactic action sequence.  Finally, "Giants Kitchen" breaks down a complex scene combining stunning sets and cutting edge technology, and "Saving the Princess" covers Jack's rescue operation.

The Blu-ray also boasts eight minutes of deleted scenes presented in HD, as well as a gag reel clocking in roughly three minutes.

So find Jack the Giant Slayer at a Blu-ray retailer near you.

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